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Martha Matinees

Martha Graham Dance Company Online New York Stage

When the modern dancer Martha Graham (1894–1991) was young, her father, a doctor, put a drop of water on a slide and asked her what she saw. “Pure water,” she answered. He then put the slide under a microscope and had her look. “There are wiggles in it,” Martha exclaimed. Dr. Graham said, “Yes, it is impure. Just remember this all of your life, Martha. You must look for the truth.” And that is what she did, in dances that dig down into those caverns measureless to man—the psyche and the soul. “Movement never lies,” Graham always said, again quoting her father. No surprise, then, that actors clamored to her classes, stars such as Bette Davis, Kirk Douglas, Gregory Peck, Joanne Woodward, Paul Newman, and Liza Minnelli. Even Madonna revered Martha. Now, gems from the Graham archives are on offer twice a week! So mark your calendar: Wednesdays and Saturdays at 2:30 EST. This week—May 20 and 23—the company explores Graham’s 1940 homage to the poet Emily Dickinson, Letter to the World. There will be footage of Graham herself performing the dance. —L.J.

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